ofo, the world’s first and largest station-free app based bike-sharing platform, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) to support the Pune Cycle Plan – a comprehensive bicycle master plan for integrated city-wide cycle tracks across Pune.
Prepared with support from the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Government of India, the Pune Cycle Plan sets out to create the necessary infrastructure for proper cycle tracks, a city-wide cycle network, seamless public sharing bicycle schemes and development of cycle promotion activities for encouraging the use of this eco-friendly mode of transport.
Mobility has become a major civic issue in Pune recently as facilities for public commuting have not kept pace with the city’s growth. As per PMC’s Environment Status Report 2016-17, with 700 private vehicles being added to the roads every day, the city’s vehicle population is now equal to its human population. This rapid rise in vehicular traffic is leading to air pollution, health problems, accidents, and wastage of time in traffic congestion. Recognizing this, the PMC has come up with the Pune Cycle Plan as part of its Comprehensive Mobility Plan (CMP).
Rajarshi Sahai, Director of Public Policy & Communications, ofo said, “We are delighted to partner with the city of Pune. We wish to improve its quality of life in the city by providing a healthier, quicker, and greener alternative to motor vehicles. Our station-free bike-sharing concept has improved the transportation in cities across the world. Our mission is to solve the ‘last mile’ transportation problem in India’s urban areas and we see immense potential in Pune for ofo’s convenient, affordable and low carbon way of travel.” He further added, “Pune’s approach to have global bicycle sharing operators bring in the bicycles, while the city builds infrastructure and parking to meet deployment is an example in role clarity for public and private sector. We are delighted by the support we have received here and we do plan to deploy in Pune soon.”
Speaking on the initiative Mr. Kunal Kumar, Commissioner of the Pune Municipal Corporation, said, “We are getting closer to our vision of sustainable mobility and healthy living in Pune. Along with partnerships for public bicycle sharing with partners like ofo, we are creating infrastructure where cycling is safe, attractive, comfortable and the travel mode of choice. As more people switch to bikes from cars for short-distance travel, apart from getting exercise, they will also help reduce traffic congestion, fuel consumption and air pollution.”
Till date, ofo has operations in over 250 cities across 20 countries alongside widespread usage by over 200 million global users with more than 6 billion efficient, convenient and green rides. This innovative bike sharing platform requires no fixed docking stations, thus providing significant flexibility for user to find and return bikes.
In Oct 2017, ofo joined hands with C40 – a network of world’s leading megacities – to establish joint efforts in tackling pollution & climate change, and contribute to research focused on healthy livable cities.
In July 2017, ofo completed Series E funding of US$700 million led by Alibaba, Hony Capital and CITIC Private Equity, becoming the world’s biggest and most valued bike-sharing company.